My Trickery Domain cleric uses the Channel Divinity option Invoke Duplicity. I cast command from the illusion's space with the command "Approach".

Does the target approach the illusion? Or do they approach the real cleric?


1 Answer 1


The rules say it approaches you, but the rules don't know how to deal with illusions

The Approach option of the command spell says (emphasis mine):

Approach. The target moves toward you by the shortest and most direct route, ending its turn if it moves within 5 feet of you.

A creature commanded to approach approaches you. However, the rules do not typically work well whenever illusions are in play.

The official recommendation of WotC(timestamp ~13:12-~21:00, you could read answer in previous link instead) in the related but distinct case of illegal targeting is that GMs ignore the rules and make up whatever seems right at the time. That recommendation applies equally well in this case, and it seems pretty clear that command should force a target to approach the origin of the spell if a caster has some unusual way of moving that somewhere else, rather than having the targets counter-intuitively walk towards your actual position whilst still not knowing that you aren't where the illusion is.

Note also that you can avoid this problem entirely by commanding the creature to "advance" instead of "approach", or any other synonym; any word not on the list of specifically denoted words with GM-adjudication-free (and thus occasionally nonsensical) effects works in whatever manner makes sense as adjudicated by the GM.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Crawford does seem to address the intent, at least, in this Twitter thread from March 2018 about the interaction of counterspell with Invoke Duplicity: "Seeing the illusion created by Invoke Duplicity isn't the same as seeing the cleric. However, seeing the illusion is sufficient for some things in the game, like counterspell, that are triggered by seeing processes (seeing the cleric casting a spell, for example)." That interpretation makes sense to me, since you're casting the spell from the illusion's space (and not your own). \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    May 16, 2020 at 7:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ OP has since confirmed that they're casting the spell from the illusion's space (I'd already assumed this to be true, but it wasn't explicitly stated in the question before). You may want to check if your answer needs to be updated as a result. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    May 18, 2020 at 19:52

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